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BBS: The Documentary

Published 2005

Long before the Internet escaped from the lab, connected the planet and redefined what it meant to use a computer there was a brave and pioneering band of computer users who spent their time, money and sanity setting up their home computers and phone lines to welcome anyone who called. By using a modem, anyone else who knew the phone number of these computers could connect to them, leave messages, send and recieve files.... and millions did.

They called these places "Bulletin Board Systems", or BBSes. And their collections of messages, rants, thoughts and dreams became the way that an entire generation learned about being online.

When the Internet grew in popularity in the early 1990s, the world of the BBS faded, changed, and became a part of the present networked world.. but it wasn't the same.

Producer Jason Scott
Audio/Visual sound, color
Language English


Reviewer: broko - - April 1, 2014
Subject: One of the best documentaries I have ever seen.
I love this documentary, and I agree with the comments. This documentary is an excellent educational tool and eye opener. Absolutely amazing! Thanks for making this Jason. Best to you on your endeavors.
Reviewer: Ghostsofdeath - - August 15, 2013
Subject: no title
this upload it awesome for teachers to show in class to teach young ones like me where their devices came from and etc....
Reviewer: cpt_mocha - - February 23, 2010
Subject: The Best Documentary Ever
This is one of those documentaries that had my eyes literally glued to the TV the entire time. I never thought in my wildest dreams that someone would make a movie like this about such an important and nostalgic subject. If you were an old school hacker or BBS freak back in the late 80's or early 90's I think you'll feel the same way while watching this.
Reviewer: babysprite - - September 7, 2009
Subject: not an easy thing to do
I couldn't imagine it was easy to capture the essence and spirit of these early Unix BBS users and sysops, but Scott does an admirable job of it.

Some of the important points (IMHO): there were a lot of shy and lonely people out there who found a sense of community on the early Unix BBSes; the best boards were free or funded by donations from their members; if a board was advertised in the media or was "for pay," then you knew right away it was probably porn.
Reviewer: MRoblivious1bmf - - May 6, 2009
Subject: thanks for the upload
Thanks for the upload.

the bbsdoc isnt perfect, i'm not sure if it ever could have been perfect with the huge amount of content that jason amassed.

it's good and the bbs community is lucky to have it.

looking forward to the individual interviews with the developers and bbs folk. perhaps there can be some recuts from fans
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on 5/10/2008